If Colonial League track and field teams haven't taken notice to the Palmerton boys and girls as potential threats, they should start to do so. The Blue Bombers earned a sweep over Northwestern asa they both picked up their third win without a loss
Senior speedster Monty Szukics swept through the 100, 200 and 400 meter dashes, before anchoring the 400 relay to a win, spearheading the Palmerton boys to a 100-49 win.
Meanwhile, junior Jess Pereira collected firsts in the 100 and 200 meter dashes, and also bested the competition in the triple jump. Senior Kelsey Hay beat the field in the three throwing events to push the Lady Bombers to a 97-53 win.
"It's still early in the season and we don't want to get to far ahead of ourselves, but today, with the conditions, I thought we did well," Palmerton head coach Mike Gombert admitted afterwards.
Other noteworthy Bomber performers were John Snyder and Lauryn Solt. Snyder took the shot put and discus, while Solt snared long jump and high jump wins.
With the losses, the Northwestern boys' and girls' teams both dropped to 0-3 on the young season.
"I think the meet went alright today," Northwestern boys' coach Brian Xander commented. "We have a lot of gaps to fill and this early in the season, we're trying to find the people to fill those holes."
The Tiger boys got a double win from Tyler Stelmack, who prevailed in the 1600 and 3200 runs.
"We're really young this year," Tiger girls' coach Dave Kerschner admitted. "We kind of rely on our distance athletes and I thought today against them, we would be able to push through in the other events. We like to think of them as a standard to see where we stand."
The Palmerton girls, defending Colonial League champions, are showing their prowess in nearly every event and remain on target to attain their team goal of possibly repeating as the league's elite.
The Bomber boys want to replicate that status and earn their way into the limelight this season as well, and according to many of their athletes, see Bangor as a potential threat.
"We have the potential (to win the Colonial League)," John Snyder admitted. "I think if we can get past Bangor, we could do that."
One of the brightest areas that Palmerton hangs its hat on is the sprints, highlighted by its stellar 400 relay team. Travis Wolfe, Dallas Miata, Alex Vignone and Szukics finished third at districts a year ago and so far have swept through competitorsthis year, including an impressive showing at the Zephyr Duals at Whitehall. They ran a 45.38 to win yesterday.
"Szukics is one of the premiere sprinters in the league, and if you surround him with three guys who are ready and willing to train hard, they're going to be pretty good," Gombert mentioned.
"My goal every meet is to help the team out the best way I can," Szukics mentioned. "I also want to get my best times, too. I'm happy with the way everyone on our team is competing so far."
When it comes to the 400 relay, Vignone commented, "We know everyone is capable of running their own legs well. But this is our third year together and our hand-offs have become perfect."
"We obviously want to win each race we're in and the school record is possible," Miata admitted. "But we have such a good relationship and chemistry together."
As the season progresses, both Northwestern and Palmerton are going to improve, and so is the competition. However, if the early-going is any indication, watch for both the Bomber boys and girls to be bringing home some hardware near the end of the season.
Palmerton 100, Northwestern 49
100 – 1. Monty Szukics (P) 11.12, 2. Dallas Miata (P), 3. Trevin Greene (P); 200 – 1. Monty Szukics (P) NA, 2. Matt Naugle (NW), 3. Dallas Miata (P); 400 – 1. Monty Szukics (P) 52.16, 2. Thomas Duffy (NW), 3. Andrew Nosti (P); 800 – 1. Cody Grohotolski (P) 2:11.4, 2. Mike Horvath (P), 3. Thomas Duffy (NW); 1600 – 1. Tyler Stelmack (NW) 5:00.4, 2. Ryan Cerrone (NW), 3. John Achtermann (P); 3200 – 1. Tyler Stelmack (NW) 10:16, 2. Ryan Cerrone (NW), 3. Patrick Strobel (NW); 110 HH – 1. Travis Wolfe (P) 17.4, 2. Bazz Jarjous (NW), 3. Caleb Muscavage (P); 300 IH – 1. Caleb Muscavage (P) 44.2, 2. Austin Shupp (P), 3. Gerald Pereira (P); 400 Relay – 1. Palmerton (Travis Wolfe, Dallas Miata, Alex Vignone, MontySzukics) 45.38; 1600 Relay – 1. Palmerton (Gerald Pereira, Charles Debski, Austin Shupp, Cody Grohotolski) 3:53; 3200 Relay – 1. Palmerton (Cody Grohotolski, Josh Evans, Dominic Shivone, Shaun Seiler) 9:39.7; Shot Put – 1. John Snyder (P) 43-7, 2. Doug Saks (NW), 3. Steve Semmel (P); Discus – 1. John Snyder (P) 126-4, 2. Alex Castellano (P), 3. Alex Partington (NW); Javelin – 1. Charles Debski (P) 116-9, 2. Justin Betz (NW), 3. Brandon Toala (NW); Long Jump – 1. Brett Hunsicker (NW) 19-1.5, 2. Alex Vignone (P), 3. Jarred Sacks (P); Triple Jump – 1. Doug Sacks (P) 40-9.5, 2. Austin Shupp (P), 3. Gerald Pereira (P); High Jump – 1. Matt Rivera (NW) 5-6, 2. Charles Debski (P), 3. Austin Weiss (NW); Pole Vault – 1. Darris Rodrigues (P) 11-0, 2. Josh Evans (P).
Palmerton 97, Northwestern 53
100 – 1. Jess Pereira (P) 13.17, 2. Lauren Anderson (NW), 3. Amy Everett (NW); 200 – 1. Jess Pereira (P) NA, 2. Lauren Anderson (NW), 3. Amy Everett (NW); 400 – 1. Lindsey Pekurney (P) 1:03.1, 2. Haley Yost (NW), 3. Kailyn Englert (P); 800 – 1. Haley Yost (NW) 2:41.5, 2. Rachel Cerrone (NW), 3. Vanessa Evans (P); 1600 – 1. Rachel Cerrone (NW) 5:57.7, 2. Abby Kemmerer (NW), 3. Natalie Boehm (NW); 3200 – 1. Emma Kemmerer (NW) 12:38.0, 2. Natalie Boehm (NW), 3. Rachel Cerrone (NW); 100 LH – 1. Breanna Quinn (P) 18.6, 2. Jess Debski (P), 3. Jess Albright (NW); 300 IH – 1. Arissa Snyder (P) 55.0, 2. Jess Debski (P), 3. Paige Horner (NW); 400 Relay – 1. Palmerton (Kaelyn Englert, Jess Pereira, Lindsey Pekurney, Lauryn Solt) 54.5; 1600 Relay – 1. Palmerton (Kaelyn Englert, Morgan Mummey, Jess Debski, Lindsey Pekurney) 5:21.5; 3200 Relay – 1. Northwestern (Haley Yost, Erin Ondush, Lauren Alden, Natalie Boehm) 11:21.7; Shot Put – 1. Kelsey Hay (P) 33-11.5, 2. Jen Snyder (P), 3. Jess Albright (NW); Discus – 1. Kelsey Hay (P) 88-3, 2. Jen Snyder (P), 3. Hannah Beville (NW); Javelin – 1. Kelsey Hay (P) 98-2, 2. Jen Snyder (P), 3. Hannah Beville (NW); Long Jump – 1. Lauryn Solt (P) 14-4, 2. Michayla Doherty (P), 3. Macie Hourt (P); Triple Jump – 1. Jess Pereira (P) 31-6.5, 2. Lauryn Solt (P), 3. Mal Brinley (NW); High Jump – 1. Lauryn Solt (P) 4-10, 2. Lauren Anderson (NW), 3. Paige Horner (NW); Pole Vault – 1. Sam Doherty (P) 8-0, 2. Michayla Doherty (P), 3. Leah Kester (NW).